Sasco Said to Hire Ex-Dublin Hill’s Joe Howley

Sasco Energy Partners LLC, the $650 million commodity trading adviser, has hired Joe Howley, who shelved plans last year to start his own hedge fund after the death of his business partner Richard Ruzika, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Howley, 53, will start immediately as a partner at Sasco, which is focused on North American natural gas and was founded in 2008 by Todd Esse and Thomas Purdy, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. Howley will trade, assist with risk management and help develop personnel, the person said.

Jonathan Gasthalter, a spokesman for Westport, Connecticut-based Sasco at Sard Verbinnen & Co., declined to comment on the appointment.

Howley had planned to start Dublin Hill Capital with Ruzika, the former chief of Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s special-situations group, who died at 53 last year after a stroke following knee surgery. Dublin Hill, which had planned to trade a macro strategy with a focus on commodities, suspended plans to start a hedge fund after Ruzika’s stroke.

Howley was previously managing director of natural-gas derivative trading at Sempra Energy, where he led a team of traders and worked closely with Esse on the firm’s energy desk, the person said.

Before that, Howley was head of natural-gas trading at Goldman Sachs. He also previously worked at Tudor Investment Corp. and began his career at J. Aron & Co., the commodities division of Goldman Sachs, according to the person. He never had a losing year throughout his career, the person said.

Howley is at least the third person Sasco has hired in the past year, the person said. Michael Zenker joined the firm as head of fundamental research from Barclays Plc, and David Zeitz, formerly of Sempra, as chief risk and compliance officer, according to the person.

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